Millions of sports injuries occur each year. Some happen to student-athletes, while others occur among adults engaging in exercise or using gym equipment.
The most common sports injuries are strains and sprains. However, torn ACL muscles, broken bones, concussions, tennis elbow, and shin splints are others.
Physical activity is vital for good health. It burns calories, builds muscles, controls mental health, reduces the risk of many diseases, and helps you look and feel your best.
Preventing and treating sports injuries is important for anyone engaging in fitness activities or organized sports. Here’s what you need to know.
Types of Sports Injuries
One of the best steps you can take to prevent sports injuries is knowing what they are. Being aware of the potential for getting hurt can help you take the right safety measures to keep it from happening to you.
There are several types of sports injuries. Some of them are listed above. Let’s look at them a bit closer.
A sprain occurs when ligaments are overstretched or torn. A strain is when muscles or tendons are torn or overstretched.
Bones may also be broken or fractured. A dislocation happens when a bone is moved from its socket.
Overuse injuries can also occur. These are common among tennis players and golfers. Baseball players may experience rotator cuff injuries, and runners may experience knee injuries, usually due to repeated impact.
These injuries can be painful but can also sideline you during recovery. That makes prevention an important part of your sports knowledge.
Sports Injury Prevention
Some sports injuries happen, even with the best preparation. However, there are some steps you can take to lower your risk.
Being properly conditioned is important. That means warming up before you play or exercise. It also means not doing activities that are beyond your abilities.
It’s best to start small and build on your skills as you gain strength, endurance, and confidence. Going too hard too soon dramatically increases the chance of getting hurt.
Mix things up to prevent overuse injuries that occur when you perform the same movements with the same muscles all the time.
Sports Injury Treatment
If you’ve been hurt, sports injury treatment is vital. It ensures proper healing and gets you back out there as soon as possible.
You can remember the best treatment with the acronym PRICE. That stands for protection from further injury, rest, ice, compression, and elevation.
Over-the-counter pain medications can help alleviate discomfort from an injury. Physical therapy is often prescribed for certain sports injuries.
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Call your doctor or seek emergency medical care right away if you notice any deformities, excessive swelling, or changes in skin color. If you can’t bear weight on the area, it’s a good idea to be seen as well.
You Can Stop Common Sports Injuries
You are your own best ally when you’re playing sports or exercising. You have the power to prevent common sports injuries in almost all instances.
Accidents will happen, but properly warming up and taking safety precautions are your best steps for staying healthy during fitness activities.
Before you go, check out all of our articles about staying healthy and enjoying physical fitness.